Creative industries sign new anti-piracy code

The creative industry and search engines have united to forge a “first-of-its kind” initiative to reduce the availability of pirated content accessed through Google and the likes of.

The showpiece of the tie-up will be a new code of practice that rights-holders and search giants will use to demote links to sites focussed on infringing content.

Although only voluntary, the code will accelerate the de-ranking of illegal sites following notices from creative rights-holders, hope the code’s signatories such as search engines Google and Bing, the film group MPA and rights group AIP.

“The code will not be a silver bullet fix,” admitted music group the BPI, another signatory.

“But it will mean that illegal sites are demoted more quickly from search results and that fans searching for music are more likely to find a fair site.”

In fact, a core aim of the code’s signatories is to make it much less likely that consumers looking for legitimate content will be presented with links to infringing content, and more likely to find a legitimate site.

In turn, that should reduce users being infected with malware (which pirated sites are loaded with), and it will go hand-in-hand with more legitimate ‘autocomplete suggestions’ on search engines.

“Pirate websites are currently much too easy to find via search, so we appreciate the parties’ willingness to try to improve that situation,” said the Motion Picture Association (MPA).

Alliance for IP (AIP) also welcomed the code, and credited officials at the UK Intellectual Property Office, the Culture department and regulator Ofcom for helping to bring it about.

It added: “[We have] consistently made the case for a collaborative process that works for all rights holders and creators and starts to help the UK’s intellectual property generators to promote and sell their works without unfair competition.”


22nd February 2017

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